All India Football Federation (AIFF) announced a 20 team competition “Super Cup tournament” in February 2019, scheduled to take place at the Kalinga Stadium, Bhubaneshwar.
The fixtures for the same has been scheduled from March 15- April 13, where 6 top teams from Indian Super League (ISL) and I-League will earn a direct qualification in the competition. The bottom 4 teams of ISL and those finished between 7th-10th positions in the I-League will indulge in Qualifiers to grab the remaining positions of the tournament.
2018 Hero Super Cup, being the inaugural edition witnessed the same number of teams indulged in a 2-day qualifying competition followed by the main competition with 8 and 12 teams respectively competing. A total of 19 matches were played with 67 times ball finding the net. Sunil Chhetri & Miku were awarded as the top goal scorer and Best player for their performance with the Indian captain scoring 6 goals in total.
Churchill Brothers (FC Goa), Gokulam Kerala, Mumbai City FC & ATK (Kolkata) progressed through Round of 16 post their winning performance in the Qualification Round. East Bengal, Goa, Mohun Bagan & Bengaluru made their way into the semi-finals of the tournament. East Bengal became the first team to reach the finals of the inaugural edition. All eyes were set for a Kolkata Derby in the final, but the Indian national team captain led- Bengaluru side improved upon their undefeated winning streak by registering a comfortable 4-2 victory against Mohun Bagan followed by a 4-1 win against East Bengal in the semi-finals and finals respectively to grab the inaugural edition of the Hero Indian Super Cup.
Bengaluru FC looks ahead to defend their title as the competition is set for a reprise. With the I-League competition set to finish today with powerpack matches scheduled, it will be exciting to witness the final table standings of the competition.
As per the current positions- Indian Arrows, Aizawl FC, Gokulam & Minerva are positioned from 7th-10th respectively in the points table. Contrary, Pune City FC and Kerala Blasters FC will be seen in action with their respective rivals from the ongoing I-League season on the opening day of the competition (15th March 2019) in the ‘Super Cup Qualifiers’. The last set of the qualifiers will see Delhi Dynamos & Chennaiyin FC in action against their counterparts from the I-League.
SUPER CUP QUALIFIERS 2019
|Friday, 15th March||5 pm||FC Pune City vs Minerva Punjab FC|
|Friday, 15th March||8.30 pm||Kerala Blasters FC vs Indian Arrows|
|Saturday, 16th March
Saturday, 16th March
|Delhi Dynamos FC vs Gokulam Kerala FC
Chennaiyin FC vs Aizawl FC
Post the Qualifiers, the focus will change gears and all eyes will be set for the Round of 16, which will commence post the international break, where the Indian U-23 national side will be seen in action in the upcoming AFC U-23 Championship Qualification. Derrick Pereira, the head coach for the side appointed in February 2019 look to change fortunes for India on the roadmap for the 2020 AFC Asian Cup.
Round of 16 will commence from March 29 and will extend till April 3 followed by the Quarter finals to be played from April 4-7. The semi-finals and the final will be held on April 9,10 & 13 respectively.
I-League CEO, Sunando Dhar has announced that Indian football is all set for hosting a single league from the following season, decoding the better off the soul among both is crucial which will take the Indian football to new heights.